Stafford Hut | Southern West Coast

A splendid hut adjacent, almost, to the superb coastline only four hours from the road. Sounds great. And it really is a Top 5 rated hut.

Yup, it’s a goodie. Built 2009, big double glazed windows, good bunks and benches, fly screens, pity they don’t keep out the sandflies, and a resident part surfboard.

However, she’s an effort to get in. Once you hit Smoothwater Stream there is a perilous coastal route can only be scrambled either side of low tide. People have died on the route in recent years.

The alternative is plenty of creek walking, so wet feet as a given. Once over the low Stafford Saddle the track is mostly in the creek bed, few markers provided, with some windfalls to negotiate.

Only for trampers with some experience of New Zealand trail finding. Then again that coast and hut are a wondrous thing.

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category . . . standard hut

hut fee . . . 1 hut ticket or backcountry hut pass, free to camp

elevation . . . 2 m

bunks . . . 6 mattresses

built . . . 2009

heating . . . firebox

water . . . tap on 500 litre rainwater tank

toilet . . . longdrop

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